By Ryan Richardson
The anticipation at the Boys and Girls Club of Southwest Missouri is high, ahead of Sunday night’s airing of Food Network’s “Restaurant: Impossible,” featuring the August renovation of the kitchen at the club.
Casey Himmelsbach, development director of the Boys and Girls Club, said that the staff will see the program for the first time Sunday night on the Food Network’s television channel.
“We’re going to see it at the same time as the rest of America,” Himmelsbach said. “We’re excited to see how it all came out, but we have no idea how they cut it together.”
The holiday-themed episode of the Robert Irvine show put nearly $30,000 worth of materials into the club over four days last August. The goal was to renovate the kitchen at the club at 317 Comingo Ave. in Joplin, and to show the rebuilding of Joplin after the May 2011 tornado.
When the television crews drove away, the club wasn’t just left with a new kitchen. It had a new storage area for children’s belongings, a new focus room for homework, and a remodeled cafeteria.
Paige Parker, club program coordinator, said that the remodeling enhances what can be done for the 250 kids that come through the doors each day.
“The kids here are spending less time waiting to eat, which gives them more time to be mentored and to use the area to the fullest,” Parker said. “They have more time to be kids.”
The network also will air a fundraising commercial for the local club. From now until Dec. 19, people can text the word “GIFT” to 27722 to donate $10 directly to the Boys and Girls Club of Southwest Missouri.
Time and channel
The “Restaurant: Impossible” episode will air at 9 p.m. Sunday on the Food Network. Cable One viewers can catch the episode on Channel 41; for DirecTV users, Channel 231.